enhanced possibilities for productivity and creativity later in life (Cohen, 2005, 2006; Small,
2008). The majority of participants involved with this project have a substantive freelance
work history and through my literature review (see Literature Review) did not find narratives
of media freelancers in the U.S. who were so public, candid and forthright about the
rewards, challenges, and adaptations of working in a youth-fixated industry. This
polyphonic collection of eleven freelancers’ work biographies, the majority between the
ages of 40 60+, provide a substantial work history fueled by talent, drive and
improvisational skills. This bonus of discovering another great story emerge through the
dissertation process, one of aging and creativity in a pro-youth industry, offers a substantial
wealth of material given that more Boomers are remaining in the workforce (Salkowitz,
The overall chapters weave the participants’ personal reflections while painting a composite
multimedia portrait of freelance enterprise including geography, creativity and aging,
negotiation, improvisation, and the generative, appreciative practices that bring life to work.
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